3 Bullets in Grizz Country

The cowboy stopped his truck and said, “you need to watch out. Make sure you don’t sleep with any food in your tent. You’re in grizz country now..”

The cowboy: note the ammo belt and rounds behind his head.

In western Wyoming, “grizz” means grizzly bear.

An ammo belt was strapped around the back of his head rest. 3 rounds were tucked in to the leather loops. 3 rounds were missing.

I have zero bullets. That night I started hanging… Continue reading

Rocky Mountain Mule Saddle Frost

Is fall not cool enough for you yet? Here are some chill photos to cool you down a few degrees. They are from my camp along the Greys River (Wyoming) earlier this week.

Is this better? Some crisp frost and fall color for you.
My camp. I’ve been sleeping in my bivy bag. Big, toasty thanks to my wife Julia for sending me a warmer sleeping bag right when I needed it. Night time temps have dipped in to the… Continue reading

Seeking Mystery Dog Food Donor

The lady’s voice on my voicemail said (and I paraphrase):

“Hi Bernie. This is Debbie at the Central Wyoming Fairgrounds in Casper. We received a bag of dog food in your name. What would you like us to do with it?”

Fantastic! People are so generous out here. There’s only one problem with this well-intended gift.

I don’t own a dog.

That’s not my dog either. Here, a dog guarding sheep east of Douglas, Wyoming.

To the mystery donor I… Continue reading

Alpine, Wyoming Arrival

Mules Brick and Cracker and I have crossed McDougal gap and arrived in Alpine, Wyoming. The timing is perfect for getting off the mountain. Rain and snow at higher elevations are forecast for the next 4 days.

An Alpine moment with Brick: I had to hug both my mules’ heads in gratitude for carrying me safely across Wyoming. We are now only a few miles from Idaho.

Right now the mules and I are settling in to Alpine. We’re camped… Continue reading

Log of Days, Names and Miles

Most evenings after the mules are staked out for the night and my tent is pitched, I dig out my journal and write down how far we’ve come.

How far we’ve come: Days 98 – 100

I don’t write in a leather bound journal you might imagine Wild Bill communing with after a busy day shooting buffalo. No, my journal’s just a plastic binder filled with 50 sheets of loose leaf paper.

I think I brought 40 sheets too many.… Continue reading

Please Help

Cracker has learned 2 of the 3 Desert Mule Travel Rules.

  • Drink when you find water
  • Eat when you find food
  • Don’t eat prickly pears
Cracker: “Please help.”

Cracker’s still working on Rule 3.

Glyn Stone: Heading East with Gorilla Tape Wheels

The wheels on his luggage cart where worn to the rim. “I made tires with Gorilla tape,” he said. “They got me here from Ogden, Utah.” Strapped to the cart were all his belongings.

Glyn Stone: traveling with his suitcase
Glyn’s duct tape wheels

I met Glyn walking up the sidewalk in Douglas, Wyoming. Why, I asked him, was he out rambling?

He says his life needed a change of direction. “I always wanted to leave my home town. It… Continue reading

Sage Land Behind Us, Mountains Ahead

200 miles of sagebrush, pronghorn antelope and frost numbed fingers are behind us. The mules and I have completed the leg from Casper, Wyoming to Pinedale.

Thawing out: this is the scene 4 days ago inside my tent. It’s 5:15 am and 25 degrees outside. The mules and I are at just under 8,000 feet at the base of Little Prospect Mountain 60 miles east of Atlantic City, Wyoming. That’s not a hat on my head. It’s a dish rag… Continue reading

Rescue Me

If you don’t have time to rescue a grasshopper from drowning, you’re moving too fast.

Rescue me: I did.

Some days I travel too fast. This particular day, when I saw the grasshopper stranded on the stock tank drain, I rendered assistance. I’m cheered to know she’s back out on the eastern Wyoming desert among the hot wind and dry grass.

Winter will halt her song soon enough. It’s a better way to go than drowning in the desert.

More… Continue reading

About Brick

The other day, months after I should have done it, I introduced you to my mule Cracker. Today, I’m going to introduce you to Brick.

Brick and Cracker on the road (outside Shawnee, Wyoming)


I know Brick’s mom was a horse but I swear it was a white-tailed deer. She’s long legged, wasp waisted and has jumped a 4-foot steel gate from a standstill. Twice. Uphill. Electric fencing doesn’t stand a chance.

Busted: Brick caught in the act… Continue reading

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